April 29, 2014

My Writing Process (Blog Hop) and Pics from the Past Two Months

The last two months have been a whirlwind of awesome I am only just now recovering from. I think out of all the time I've been a published author (which isn't even a year yet), this spring has been when it's hit me most that it's legit. I got to attend my first two book festivals, the UCF Book Festival and the Southern Kentucky Book Festival, and I got to go on a week long tour with Jessica Brody, Jessica Khoury, Anna Banks, and Christina Farley. So many good memories to revisit! Here's a few of my favorites:
This is Grace who was waiting to say hi when I arrived at my signing table in Kentucky. She gushed about Gated and basically made me smile like a loon because I was so excited that she was excited!

Me with Lauren Morrill and Jenny Hubbard, two of my fellow RH authors. They are both super sweet and wickedly talented. How did I ever end up in this group?!!

Me with Christina Farley, Anna Banks, Jessica Brody, and Jessica Khoury, my fellow YA Chicks on tour. SO much fun!

Barnes and Noble Signing w/top row: Jamie Ayres, Jessica Porter, Eliza Tilton, (bottom row: Melissa Landers, Lynne Matson, and Krystal Wade.

I could bombard you with even more pics, but since the main focus of this post is to take part in the writing process blog hop that a bunch of other middle grade and young adult authors are participating in, I'm going to get right to it. I was tapped by the lovely and talented, Kristen Simmons, author of ARTICLE FIVE, BREAKING POINT, and THREE to answer some questions about my writing process after we hung out at the UCF Festival together. (You can see her post on her writing process here)

So here goes:

  1. What am I working on?
I am currently working on a novel about a girl who has been abducted by a serial killer couple who use her as bait to lure in other girls they plan to torture and then murder...light-hearted stuff, right? The story focuses on the last victim she's helped kidnap and the bond she forges with her. Can she watch this girl die or will she try to stop it this time? 

     2.How does my work differ from others of its genre?

I like to think that my work balances a healthy dose of horror and suspense with the psychological ramifications of being in awful situations where you are confronted by humans capable of extreme evil.I hope that I create villians who feel like fully formed people with both good and bad elements to them. I want you to both hate them and be drawn in by them. My work is solidly contemporary, but one of my goals is to make readers see that many themes presented in horror, sci fi, and/or dystopia exist in contemporary stories as well.

     3. How does your writing process work?

I am a total plantser--no, I didn't misspell that. It's a hybrid between plotter and pantser. Basically I try very hard to plot out the book beforehand by doing character studies, story boards, etc. BUT then I start writing and most of what I thought would happen goes out the window and I fly by the seat of my pants or by the ink from my pen. Still, I do it because I think it's necessary for me to get fully into the story. I write longhand first in composition notebooks ( I used to use legal pads, but the notebooks are more portable and fit in my purse). Then I revise as I type those pages in. Once the whole WIP is typed in I print out the whole draft and revise yet again. I write slow and I can't do a sloppy first draft no matter what. I need to revise as I go. It's how I roll. I am definitely the tortoise writing wise and not the hare. You can see a detailed version of my writing process on my YA Rebels Vlog here or here.

And now I'm going to tap Krystal Wade to pick up the blog hop from here. It seemed fitting since she's got a deliciously creepy book coming out very soon called CHARMING that I can't wait to read. Check out the cover, awesome, right? Besides, she has chickens and is seriously fun to hang out with. 'nough said.

April 21, 2014

Kentucky Here I Come!!!

If you live anywhere near Bowling Green you can come see me at the Southern Kentucky Book Festival this weekend. AND there will be a whole bunch of other YA authors there including Jessica Brody, Julie Kagawa, Jessica Khoury, Jenny Hubbard, Melissa Landers, Shannon Messenger, Lauren Morill, Katie McGarry, CJ Redwine, and TONS more!!!! Check out the scheduled programs and panels here. 

I will be doing a panel called First Books for YA Authors at 1pm in the auditorium. There will be three other awesome panels as well that you won't want to miss! Plus there's a huge signing space where we will all be signing books. Come see us!!